Photo: Getty Images

Watch Gas Monkey Garage’s Richard Rawlings crash in match race vs. NHRA’s Leah Pritchett

1 Comment

In addition to all the series regulars she races on the NHRA Top Fuel drag racing circuit, Leah Pritchett is always game for a good match race.

While enjoying an off-weekend from the 24-race NHRA season, Pritchett and Don Schumacher Racing teammate Matt Hagan last Saturday took part in the fourth annual Roadkill Nights Celebrity Drag Race on a 1/8-mile temporary drag strip on famed Woodward Avenue in Pontiac, Michigan.

Leah Pritchett (photo: NHRA)

Pritchett reached the finals, but lost to famed WWE wrestler Bill Goldberg, who donated the $10,000 price to his charity, “Ahero”, which connects veterans with patriotic members of local communities by organizing outdoor events and social activities.

But Goldberg’s win wasn’t the most talked about event of the evening. That distinct “honor” went to Richard Rawlings, star of several car-related shows on the Discovery Network, including Gas Monkey Garage and Fast And Loud.

While racing Pritchett in the first round, Rawlings, driving a brand new 2018 Dodge Challenger Hellcat and after an impressive burnout … well, let’s just say he got the 707-horsepower muscle car out of the groove on the very narrow temporary dragstrip.

And before he could say “I spun my tires,” Rawlings lost control and plowed into the concrete lane barrier at an estimated 70 mph.

Pritchett had a great zinger to Rawlings after the incident: “It was pretty unique, Richard. I’ve never gone down the return road when the other competitor is still going down the racetrack. It’s a first for us all.”

While the driver’s side damage could have been a lot worse, the normally big-talking Rawlings admitted “I just got beat by the fastest woman in the world. I’m good with that.”

According to TheDrive.com, one fan had plenty to say to Rawlings.

“You showboated all the way into the wall!” the fan yelled at Rawlings. “That sucks big time.”

Check out the video of Rawlings’ faux pas:

Follow @JerryBonkowski

Zach Veach splits with Andretti Autosport for rest of IndyCar season

Gregory Shamus/Getty Images
1 Comment

Zach Veach will be leaving his Andretti Autosport ride with three races remaining in the season, choosing to explore options after the decision was made he wouldn’t return for 2021.

In a Wednesday release, Andretti Autosport said a replacement driver for the No. 26 Dallara-Honda would be named in the coming days. The NTT IndyCar Series will race Oct. 2-3 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course and then conclude the season Oct. 25 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida.

Veach was ranked 11th in the points standings through 11 races of his third season with Andretti. Since a fourth in the June 6 season opener at Texas Motor Speedway, he hadn’t finished higher than 14th.

“The decision was made that I will not be returning in 2021 with Andretti Autosport in the No. 26 Gainbridge car,” Veach said in the Andretti release. “This, along with knowing that limited testing exists for teams due to COVID, have led me to the decision to step out of the car for the remainder of the 2020 IndyCar season. I am doing this to allow the team to have time with other drivers as they prepare for 2021, and so that I can also explore my own 2021 options.

“This is the hardest decision I have ever made, but to me, racing is about family, and it is my belief that you take care of your family. Andretti Autosport is my family and I feel this is what is best to help us all reach the next step. I will forever be grateful to Michael and the team for all of their support over the years. I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for a relationship that started many years ago with Road to Indy. I will also be forever grateful to Dan Towriss for his friendship and for the opportunity he and Gainbridge have given me.

“My love for this sport and the people involved is unmeasurable, and I look forward to continuing to be amongst the racing world and fans in 2021.”

Said team owner Michael Andretti: “We first welcomed Zach to the Andretti team back in his USF2000 days and have enjoyed watching him grow and evolve as a racer, and a person. His decision to allow us to use the last few races to explore our 2021 options shows the measure of his character.

“Zach has always placed team and family first, and we’re very happy to have had him as part of ours for so many years. We wish him the best in whatever 2021 may bring and will always consider him a friend.”

Andretti fields five full-time cars for Veach, Alexander Rossi, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Marco Andretti and Colton Herta.

It also has fielded James Hinchcliffe in three races this season.